SENATE BILL 451
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
Cliff R. Pirtle
RELATING TO PAROLE; REQUIRING THE CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENT TO REVIEW A PRISONER'S RECENT PHONE CALLS AND TO AUDIT THE PRISONER'S EARNED MERITORIOUS DEDUCTIONS PRIOR TO THE EARLY RELEASE OF THE PRISONER FROM CONFINEMENT; REQUIRING THE PAROLE BOARD TO WEBCAST PAROLE HEARINGS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 31-21-25 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1975, Chapter 194, Section 4, as amended) is amended to read:
"31-21-25. POWERS AND DUTIES OF THE BOARD.--
A. The parole board shall have the powers and duties of the former state board of probation and parole pursuant to Sections 31-21-6 and 31-21-10 through 31-21-17 NMSA 1978 and such additional powers and duties relating to the parole of adults as are enumerated in this section.
B. The parole board shall have the following powers and duties to:
(1) grant, deny or revoke parole;
(2) conduct or cause to be conducted such investigations, examinations, interviews, hearings and other proceedings as may be necessary for the effectual discharge of the duties of the board;
(3) summon witnesses, books, papers, reports, documents or tangible things and administer oaths as may be necessary for the effectual discharge of the duties of the board;
(4) maintain records of its acts, decisions and orders and notify each corrections facility of its decisions relating to persons who are or have been confined therein;
(5) adopt an official seal of which the courts shall take judicial notice;
(6) employ such officers, agents, assistants and other employees as may be necessary for the effectual discharge of the duties of the board;
(7) contract for services, supplies, equipment, office space and such other provisions as may be necessary for the effectual discharge of the duties of the board; and
(8) adopt such rules and regulations as may be necessary for the effectual discharge of the duties of the board.
C. The parole board shall provide a prisoner or parolee with a written statement of the reason or reasons for denying or revoking parole.
D. The parole board shall adopt a written policy specifying the criteria to be considered by the board in determining whether to grant, deny or revoke parole or to discharge a parolee. When the determination is whether to grant or deny parole, these criteria shall include a review by the parole board of:
(1) the attestation provided to the board by the corrections department pursuant to Section 33-2-52 NMSA 1978; and
(2) the audit of the prisoner's earned meritorious deductions conducted by the corrections department pursuant to Section 33-2-52 NMSA 1978.
E. When the parole board conducts a parole hearing for an offender, [and] the parole board shall webcast the hearing live online. The parole board shall, upon request of the victim or family member [the board shall], allow the victim of the offender's crime or a family member of the victim to be present during the parole hearing. If the victim or a family member of the victim requests an opportunity to speak to the board during the hearing in public or private, the board shall grant that request. As used in this subsection, "family member of the victim" means a mother, father, sister, brother, child or spouse of the victim or a person who has custody of the victim."
SECTION 2. A new Section 33-2-52 NMSA 1978 is enacted to read:
"33-2-52. [NEW MATERIAL] EARLY RELEASE FROM CONFINEMENT.--At least thirty days before any parole hearing for the release of an inmate from confinement, the corrections department shall:
A. review all phone calls placed or received by the inmate within the last ninety days and attest to the parole board that this review has been conducted; and
B. audit and make publicly available online the meritorious deductions earned by the inmate."
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